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From streetfighter to boxing referee and judge: the ups and downs of being a woman in the ring

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Boxing Referee and Judge Phumeza Zinakile is determined to see changes in her industry
Boxing Referee and Judge Phumeza Zinakile is determined to see changes in her industry
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As a young girl growing up in Kwelerha village and Mdantsane, East London, Phumeza Zinakile (39) was always a little rough around the edges.

Instead of brushing barbie dolls and playing with lipstick and nail polish, she was always on the sports field with boys or getting into fights.

Her uncle and former boxing legend Zolile Mbityi often took her to boxing matches and his training sessions at the gym. “My uncle saw something special in me, and wanted to nurture it, I guess.”

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